Today’s Cubs Birthdays (September 6)
~Steve Macko 1954–1982 (Cubs 1979-1980)
His story is one of the most tragic tales in Cubs history. His father was a coach with the Cubs, and Steve was one of their hot young phenoms. He was a middle infielder, and made it to the majors in 1979. In August of 1980, he was injured in a collision at second base. During the physical examination after the injury, the doctors discovered that Macko had cancer. He never played with the Cubs again. In his final season he hit .300 and had a 1.000 fielding percentage. He died just two years later, at the age of 27, on November 15, 1982. (Photo: 1981 Donruss Baseball Card)
~Hal Jeffcoat 1924–2007 (Cubs 1948-1955)
Jeffcoat came up to the big leagues as a center fielder. He had good years and bad years with the bat, but he always had a great arm. In 1954 the Cubs converted him into a relief pitcher. He did very well in that role. In two seasons out of the Cubs bullpen, he appeared in 108 games. He won 13 games and saved 13. The Cubs traded him to the Reds in 1956. In his first month with the Reds, Jeffcoat beaned Don Zimmer of the Dodgers, ending his season. Zimmer later had to have a plate put in his head because of that beaning.
~Harry Perkowski 1922–2016 (Cubs 1955)
Harry was acquired along with Ted Tappe and Jim Bolger for Johnny Klippstein after the 1954 season. Perkowski had had a few double-digit win seasons with the Reds before coming to Chicago, but he didn’t have a great season with the Cubs. He won three games and saved two in 25 appearances. Harry passed away during the Cubs 2016 World Series season at the age of 93.
~Vallie Eaves 1911–1960 (Cubs 1941-1942)
Vallie was part Cherokee Indian, so naturally his teammates called him “Chief”. Eaves was a pitcher. In 1941, he completed four of his seven starts and posted a respectable 3.53 ERA. It was really his last hurrah in the big leagues. He appeared in two more games in 1942, but the rest of his career was spent in the minor leagues. Eaves was 46 years old when he retired from baseball in 1957.
~Derrek Lee 1975– (Cubs 2004-2010)
D-Lee was one of the most popular Cubs during his time in Chicago. Cubs fans quickly forgot that he had gotten the big hit during the Bartman game as a member of the Marlins in 2003. In 2005, Lee had a career season. He won the batting title, led the league in hits and doubles, finished second in homers (46), seventh in RBI, and third in the MVP voting. He also won a Gold Glove and a Silver Slugger award. In his stellar 15-year career, Derrek was a two-time All-Star (both times with the Cubs), a three-time Gold Glover (twice with the Cubs), and hit 331 homers (189 with the Cubs). His father Leon was a professional baseball player in Japan (where Derrek grew up), and his uncle Leron played in the big leagues for four teams before also going to Japan. (Photo: 2009 Topps Baseball Card)